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[WATCH] McConnell Lends Support to Bipartisan Gun Reform Bill While 27 Democrats Vote Against SCOTUS Protections ‘On Principle’

[WATCH] McConnell Lends Support to Bipartisan Gun Reform Bill While 27 Democrats Vote Against SCOTUS Protections ‘On Principle’

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced his support on Tuesday for the emerging bipartisan gun agreement in Congress, boosting momentum for modest but notable election-year action on an issue that’s deadlocked lawmakers for three decades. McConnell’s backing was just the latest indication that last month’s gun massacres in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas, had reconfigured the political calculations for some in the GOP after years of steadfastly opposing even the suggestion of tightening restrictions on guns.

McConnell said he hoped an outline of the accord, released Sunday by 10 Democrats and 10 Republicans, would be translated into legislation and enacted “to make progress for the country.”

The plan would for the first time make the juvenile records of gun buyers under age 21 part of required background checks. Money would be sent to states for mental health and school security programs and for incentives to enforce or enact local “red flag” laws that let authorities win court approval to temporarily remove guns from people considered dangerous.

Also on Tuesday, the House passed a bill in a 396-27 vote that would provide security protections to family members of Supreme Court justices, sending the measure to President Biden’s desk for final approval. The 27 Democrats who voted “no” did so in protest of a protective law being passed for the justices before children or other members of the public who have been victimized by gun violence with far more regularity and deadly consequences than the recent threat against Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

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But McConnell made clear he would only go so far in restricting firearms. In one of the more frustrating aspects of the bill being sent to the President is that it doesn’t raise the minimum required age to purchase a gun. Asked by a reporter why the federal minimum age is 21 for tobacco and alcohol sales but 18 to buy rifles, he answered, “Good try.” He added that including state and local juvenile records in background checks for the youngest guy buyers was “a step in the right direction.”

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